THE FOURTEENTH ANNUAL RIO
(REPORT ON INTERNATIONAL OBLIGATIONS) REPORT CARD,
Grading the Government of
Canada and the Provinces/Territories on their Environmental
and Sustainable Development Commitments
Sierra Club of Canada has been researching, writing
and producing the RIO Report Card every year since
1993, marking the first anniversary of the Earth Summit
in Rio de Janeiro, and every anniversary since.
The report card, now in its fourteenth year, continues
under the name RIO, as an acronym and not a city.
R.I.O. stands for “Report on International Obligations.”
We continue to measure progress on environment and
development commitments, whether reached in Rio, Kyoto,
Johannesburg or Stockholm.
This is the first report card to grade the federal
government of Prime Minister Stephen Harper. Although
Mr. Harper has been Prime Minister less than six months,
the slide in marks is clear and worrying.
The previous minority Martin Government was making
limited progress. Former Environment Minister Stéphane
Dion did superb work from June 2005 until the close
of the climate conference in December. In fact, Minister
Dion ignored the fall of the government on November
28, 2005 and conducted himself as a heroic President
of the negotiations. International NGOs rated his
performance as the best of any in the last thirteen
years of Conferences of the Parties.
The provincial record is mixed, with special bonus
marks to Ontario for water policy, and no progress
at all for the Alberta government of Ralph Klein.